Choral with orchestra
Ensemble with string orchestra
Vocal with chamber orchestra
Wind band works
Duration: 9 minutes
Year of composition: 2006
Published by Oxford University Press
Slow Dawn is a gentle and evocative piece for wind band. Berkeley depicts the gradual appearance of the sun (in the form of the tuba), 'shafts of light and playful reflections' which accompany the increasing warmth of day, the 'music of midday' suggesting 'the savage anger of heat in foreign climes with stabbing beams of light', and the final descent of the sun at the end of the day.
Tim Reynish had been asking me to write for Wind Band for a quarter of a century and Slow Dawn, which is dedicated to the memory of his son, William, was, finally, the result. It depicts the gradual appearance of the sun (in the form of the tuba) as it climbs into the sky. Shafts of light and playful reflections accompany the increasing warmth of day. Allthough in this hemisphere we have tended to think of, as Wilfred Owen put it, 'the kind old sun', the music of midday in this piece suggests more the savage anger of heat in foreign climes with stabbing beams of light. Though the sun winds down as ever, it is its endless power that informs the music's closing bars.